Scene from the stone bridge bivouac shelter by the entrance
|Location||Loser Plateau, Austria|
|Discovery||Cambridge University Caving Club 1999|
|Translation||Stone bridge cave (German)|
Steinbrücken Cave (German: Steinbrückenhöhle, "Stone bridge cave", no. 1623/204 in the Austrian Caves Register) was discovered by the Cambridge University Caving Club on the Loser Plateau in 1999. It is named after a nearby natural arch. The arch is in fact a former entrance to Traungold Cave (1623/231e) which has been developed into a convenient bivouac shelter for cave explorers.
As of 2006, the cave has six entrances, has passages of 11.7 km in length and a depth of 542m. There are over 380 question marks (unexplored leads) of varying quality in the cave.
The originally discovered entrance A is primarily used as a route to the deepest part of the cave, Razor Dance, a narrow rift of over 500m extent. 32 pitches and climbs are required to reach the terminal sump.
Most other explorations begin at entrance E, which leads through an awkward crawl to a 30-metre pitch that has a deposit of snow at the bottom most years. From here extensive horizontal levels of Swings and Roundabouts, Treeumphant and Rhino rift can be reached. Descending 150m of the Gaffered series of pitches leads to another horizontal development called The Underworld. A further 50m of pitches leads to an extensive horizontal development called Subsoil. Subway level, the lowest stratigraphical layer of the cave, can then be reached by descending 100m down the Four Pitches of the Apocalypse.
There are numerous small caves in the vicinity, including Tunnock Shaft and Hauch Cave. The closest cave of over 10 km extent is Kaninchenhöhle.